Ministry, CPC to plan out fuel supply strategy


A decisive meeting will be held between the Power Ministry and Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) today, January 17, to determine the fuel supply arrangements for an uninterrupted power supply.

Power Minister, Gamini Lokuge stated that power outages will not occur if the CPC provides the required fuel stocks for power generation.

Minister Lokuge said power cuts will not take place till tomorrow (18) as 3,000 metric tonnes of fuel had been given to the Kelanitissa Power Plant.

However, he added that if the required amounts of fuel are not provided until January 22, a decision will have to be taken, and it is possible that power outages could occur.

Minister Lokuge said discussions will be held today, January 17, with the CPC to request the required amounts of fuel to avoid any possible power outages. He also added that the CPC is given prior knowledge every year about the required fuel amounts for the Ceylon Electricity Board (CEB). Thus, he is hopeful that the CPC will assist in preventing the power outages.

He also said that the Norochcholai Coal Power Plant (NCPP) has three units with 300 Megawatts capacity, and unfortunately, one unit is experiencing a failure.

“The plant has three units which together generate 900 MW of power. However, one unit is malfunctioning, signifying a shortfall of 300 megawatts of electricity. Engineers hope that the unit will be fixed by January 22, which would add another 300 MW of power to the National Grid. We are hopeful that the failed generators at the Norochcholai Coal Power Plant could be reactivated,” he noted.

Minister Lokuge said that hydropower stations such as Victoria and Samanalawewa are also facing difficulties to meet the current electricity requirement due to the dry season.

“We are not receiving a sufficient amount of electricity through hydropower stations. Due to the dry season, the Samanalawewa and Victoria water sources are used  to supply drinking water and agricultural needs in the respective areas. Therefore, the hydropower stations are not receiving the required amounts of water supply,” he added.

He disclosed that discussions are being held with Irrigation and Water Resource Management Minister, Chamal Rajapaksa to sort out the issue.

Despite the fact that the country is now experiencing a serious foreign currency crisis, the Minister stated that the authorities are striving to provide an uninterrupted electricity supply to avoid any inconvenience to the public.